Want to bet others knew EVs are more costly?

  31 August 2010

Those dealers looking forward to any little fillip which electric cars will bring to their showrooms anytime soon will have been less than pleased with Mitsubishi’s honesty this week.

The car maker’s revelation to the BBC that electric cars could be more expensive to run than petrol equivalents will have come like a blow from a kicking horse to both dealers and prospective buyers.

The revelation will do to electric car sales what the alleged betting scams will do to cricket; both electric cars sales and cricket will be stumped. Some dealers, I am sure, will be thinking why couldn’t Mitsubishi have kept their revelation to themselves? Nissan dealers will probably be thinking that the purpose of Mitsubishi’s disclosure was a spoiling tactic.

Without wishing to appear over moralistic, Mitsubishi was right to reveal what they know, if only because these things have a habit of coming-back to haunt one.

And just as opponents who have played and beaten Pakistan at cricket over recent times are now wondering if the match results were genuine, so too, am I pondering various things. Did other car manufacturers who have tooled-up EV programmes know as much about the running costs as Mitsubishi? If so, why did they decide to keep dealers and motorists in the dark? Would you bet on that being the case?


It could be a big month for Mini dealers this month with the arrival of the new maxi Mini – the brand’s biggest model, the first with four doors and the first with 4-wheel drive. It could prove that the brand is no longer a one-trick pony as it bids to appeal to families.

It is going to be interesting to see whether it appeals more to existing Mini owners than it does to buyers of other makes. The other ‘first’ for the Countryman is that it the first Mini not to be produced in Oxford. It is being built in Austria at the plant of Magna Steyr.

September will also be a big month for those of you offering MoT tests. Following the surge in new car sales in September 2007, the 420,000 new units sold in those heady days are due for their first test. Doesn’t time fly? Add to that figure all the older cars on the road requiring a test and it means that next month, 2.5m will have to be tested – more than any other month in history.

What an opportunity to have such footfall coming through the workshop.

Have a great week, both in and out of the showroom. If you have a story for us, email barry@auto-retail.com
Barry Hook


Start your free 14 day trial

Get free access to our Bulletin, Agenda & Profit for 14 days.

After 14 days we will auto bill your credit or debit card unless the order is cancelled.

As an auto retail executive you need insightful and unique industry intelligence to boost your business potential. Here’s a taste of what Auto Retail Network has to offer:

  • Get informed and boost your business potential
  • More than 1,200 fellow executives have joined us
    since launch
  • Independent, carefully crafted, unique content relevant to you and your business
  • Develop a greater awareness of market trends and opportunities
  • Access to a wide range of materials whenever, wherever and however you want it
  • Significant discounts on ARN events, reports and
    other publications